With Assassin’s Creed Syndicate, Ubisoft will be looking to make amends for the disastrous launch of the multiplayer-focused Assassin’s Creed Unity. The title was not quite as revolutionary as its setting in 1700s France, suffering from some game-breaking bugs and serious connection problems on release. The game became part of an unfortunate period of games practically broken at launch, along with the likes of Sonic Boom and Halo: The Master Chief Collection.
Ubisoft will no doubt be hoping that Assassin’s Creed Syndicate avoids any such problems when it releases, with a return to the fore of a single-player experience. There will, however, be at least one hangover from Assassin’s Creed Unity, as the game will rely on more than a simple one protagonist setup. Instead, Assassin’s Creed Syndicate builds its plot around twins Evie and Jacob Frye, acting as multiple playable characters in a move successfully used by Grand Theft Auto V.
Although the plan to introduce dual main characters was certainly an interesting one, many fans of the Assassin’s Creed series have wondered about exactly why the developer made this design choice. Now, would-be players of the title have an answer. According to game director Scott Phillips, Jacob and Evie will be able to show the character the ramifications of their choice of actions during the game, and have been part of the design process from the beginning.
Speaking with GameSpot in a recent interview, Phillips explained that “Jacob and Evie were around from the very beginning.” The characters were an organic development of the Victoria-era London setting, which acted as a framework for the team to build upon. “From there we developed characters, we developed what these characters would go through, what the story is we want to tell,” stated Phillips.
From the sounds of it, however, the player’s use of Evie and Jacob could have very interesting results. “We always knew we wanted this ability to tell a story from two different sides,” Phillips said, before continuing to reveal that Assassin’s Creed Syndicate will “show the consequences” of what happens when different characters are taken through different paths. Ubisoft has already given a clear idea of Evie and Jacob’s characters, with Evie more calculating and Jacob more brash, so perhaps these different attitudes could lead to some fascinating moments within the plot.
Phillips was less vocal when asked about the large number of Assassin’s Creed Syndicate special editions. There are currently five different versions of the game planned, from the Standard Edition through to the Big Ben Edition, but neither Phillips nor Ubisoft’s PR representative were able to give a clear answer on why there would be such a large number of versions of the game. With Ubisoft already under fire over the Jack the Ripper DLC, this may well be another bone of contention that will have to be addressed.
Assassin’s Creed Syndicate releases on October 23, 2015 for PS4 and Xbox One, and November 19, 2015 for PC.